I. Introduction: Basketball was invented by Dr. Naismith in 1891 with two peach baskets. Naismith stressed the agility of play rather than physical roughness.
A. The NBA features minimal violence compared to the other major national sports.
II. Body: The history of the NBA began in 1949 with eight teams in two divisions. In 1998, there are thirty-two teams in four divisions, with the two conference winners meeting for the championship in June.
A. The rules of the NBA have developed over the years and are established today, with occasional adjustments and additions, including the 24-second clock, the 3-point shot, the flagrant foul, the outlawing of zone defenses, the falling-out-of-bounds time-out rule, and the widening of the lanes.
B. Major stars have dominated play since 1949, although some early stars are not as remembered by today's fans as they should be. What marks the career of a superstar, more often than not, is his ability to lead a finely-tuned team to the championship, rather than merely exhibit his individual talent.
III. Conclusion: The 1998 playoffs are important because they may spell the end of the Chicago Bull dynasty. The Los Angeles Lakers probably offer the Bulls the greatest challenge, although both teams must win two more series to reach the finals in June.
The National Basketball Association has its origins, like all organized basketball, in the 1891 concept of Dr. James Naismith, who used two peach baskets and thirteen rules to create the game of basketball (Harris 6). The basic premise envisioned by Naismith holds true still today over a century later. The NBA boasts some of the strongest, most agile and gifted athletes in the world playing 48 minutes per game under many more than thirteen rules.
Naismith "sought to emphasize quickness and agility and cleverness in his new game and to penalize toughness" (Harris 7). Although the fight between Miami's Alonzo Mourning and New York's Lar...